It’s coming up for summer, the weather is getting warmer, and you can’t wait to get away from it all with your partner or a group of friends by taking a trip to the pool or the beach to cool down in the water. It’s an ideal summer day for many but for someone less comfortable in the water it could be a source of dread. Maybe you can’t swim, or maybe you can keep yourself afloat but hate that there’s a risk your head could slip below the surface. Whatever your reasons for feeling unsafe there aren’t many inconspicuous or stylish ways to alleviate your fears. You’d really rather not have to wear the luminous inflatable arm bands and you might have been convinced by the lilo, except the risk that some idiot might tip you off the side.
Mindful of people’s discomfort in water and the high numbers of accidental deaths by drowning every year, designer Katerina Semenko and inventor Valery Griznov have designed a line of swimming costumes called Uslon for women and men that put safety first without sacrificing style. Their swimming costumes essentially act like life jackets, using air bubbles and rubber tubing to keep you afloat.
What’s impressive, though, is just how much more discreet these costumes are than the standard life jacket. In the women’s one piece, the tubing filled with air bubbles is found in the suit’s halterneck and its collar, whilst in the two piece the tubing runs along where the elastic support around the waist and under the bust is found. Both suits also use the air-filled cups to add more buoyancy, as well as some lift, we imagine, should that be something you’d want.
The great thing about the suits is that it’s a life-saving device that will always be active when you’re wearing it since the air-filled tubes don’t have to be inflated and there’s no risk of puncture since the tubes are filled with lots of tiny separate bubbles and use atmospheric pressure to keep you floating.
The costumes are, of course, not quite as effective as dedicated life jackets but research behind their design states that if the human body receives an extra two to three kilograms of buoyancy, it’s much harder for the body to drown. So whilst there’s no absolute guarantee of safety, Uslon is able to provide that extra three kilograms required for protection and greater peace of mind in the water without having you wear anything more than an ordinary looking swimming costume. We can’t spot any immediate plans to make the suit commercially available but we’d love to see it happen sooner rather than later.
Image: Semenko Design
Via Design Boom